Ritsuko Shimazaki, 58, occasionally takes a 70-minute train ride to visit one coffee shop in particular near the upscale district of Omotesando in Tokyo's Shibuya Ward.

The cafe — seemingly a standard trendy coffee shop with wooden tables and about a dozen seats surrounded by colorful flower bouquets — is the only public space where Shimazaki can cry over her lost dog without caring whether other customers stare at her.

Pet Loss Cafe is the first place in Japan to offer a place for people who have lost their pets to gather and talk about their memories over a cup of coffee. Besides ordering drinks, customers fill out a form in which they answer questions regarding the type of animal they lost and whether they want to chat with members of the staff or be left alone.